Happy Friday! If you asked me 10-plus years ago if I would trust a
Web-based e-mail client to use as my main e-mail address, I'd probably
have answered no. No, because of a limited amount of space, reliability, and
most of all, fear of compromise. Back then I always used two clients, my
Web-based e-mail for not-so-important e-mails and the desktop
client Outlook to retrieve my e-mail from my ISP for my important
e-mails. Eventually given time, as Web-based email services grew more
robust -- with more storage capacity, more reliability, more functionality,
and search capabilities, I eventually weaned myself off of my ISP
e-mail and went to a Web-only client.
Today, after more than a decade of using Yahoo mail and Gmail
e-mail clients, I think they are pretty reliable, but maybe it's
just my luck. Sure, I have had hiccups here and there with services
temporarily unavailable (very seldom), my account has almost
been compromised once (me stupidly using a very weak password), and
yes, I do get spam (which by the way is much less these days with built-
in spam filters). But given these few drawbacks, for the amount I
utilize the service (a lot), I don't yet regret it. So, that's my little take.
In this week's members' answers to Rob's question on the pros and cons
of Web-based e-mail clients, many members shared their thoughts
from the benefits -- like access anywhere -- to the negatives, such as
trusting the cloud services or having to be online. One thing
a few people mentioned is that if you do use a Web-based client, most
services will give you the capability to use a desktop e-mail client like
Thunderbird and Outlook/Windows Live to manage your Web-based e-mails,
so that you can download them to your hard drive and back them up. So,
if you're in Rob's shoes, give this entire discussion topic a read, and you
should have a good idea of whether Web-based e-mail is something for
you to start using. Thanks, everyone, for your contributions, and have a
great weekend! (By the way, if you want to know how to back up your e-mails
from a free Web-based e-mail client, check out this previous newsletter topic to
get some sound advice.)
Q: What are the pros and cons of Web-based e-mail systems? Hi Lee & friends, I really appreciate the advice and opinions that you
share with us in the Topic of the Week. Here's a question on which I'd
appreciate some advice: What are the pros and cons of using a
Web-based e-mail system such as Gmail instead of a system where I use a
mail client such as Outlook and my e-mails are stored on my computer?
I currently use Outlook, but find that the Webmail app provided by my
ISP is very unreliable and slow. So accessing my mail when I'm away
from home is not easy. (I'm not into iPhones, iPads, etc.) Presumably,
using a Web-based system would mean I don't have to worry about
backing up my e-mails any more.
The wisdom of community members on this issue would be very welcome. Thanks.
Q: Do surge protectors merely give us a false sense of security? Here's why I ask this question. I live in upstate South Carolina, a
region prone to severe thunderstorms in the spring and summer. So
naturally I purchased and faithfully use surge protectors for all of
my sensitive electronic equipment. Several weeks ago we had a doozy of
a thunderstorm with multiple nearby lightning strikes and power
surges. I sat confidently at my computer and continued to work,
basking in the false security of a UPS and multiple surge protectors.
Zap-crackle, zap-crackle, Zap! "Wow, that was close" I thought. I even
thought I heard the surge protector "kick in." What I heard was my
cable modem arcing to ground! Yep. Fried it. And the phone modem. But
the big loss was my... Read more >>>
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Community Quick Poll
What do you prefer for sending and receiving e-mails?
Please click on button to vote
Web-based email (Yahoo mail, Gmail, Windows Live/Hotmail...) (Why?) Desktop e-mail client (Outlook, Thunderbird...) (Why?) I use both: Web mail and my desktop e-mail client. (Why both?) Does snail mail count?